Versteeg OK after hit, Crawford to start vs. Bruins

Versteeg OK after hit, Crawford to start vs. Bruins
January 18, 2014, 2:00 pm
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Kris Versteeg will play and Corey Crawford will start when the Chicago Blackhawks host the Boston Bruins at the United Center on Sunday morning.

Versteeg didn’t play the third period on Friday night, after he collided with teammate Bryan Bickell at the end of the second. Versteeg was down for a few moments before going off under his own power.

The Blackhawks right wing, who practiced with the team on Saturday, said it was more precautionary that he didn’t return in the Blackhawks’ 4-2 victory over Anaheim.

“That’s pretty much it with protocol nowadays,” he said. “I got winded, and it was just precaution. Obviously it’s a game that meant a lot. But it’s midseason, and in the grand scheme of things you want to be more careful.”

[MORE: Duck Hunt: Blackhawks end Anaheim's streak]

Bickell and Versteeg could laugh about the hit now that Versteeg was OK.

“With the little bit of air he had left in his lungs he said something to me,” Bickell said to laughs. “I shot the puck and knew there wasn’t much time. I was looking that way but I don’t know what happened. Just thought he better move because I’m going straight. He took the worst of it. But he looked good out there today.”

The Blackhawks and Bruins play here for the first time since Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final.

Crawford stopped 19 of 21 on Friday night to get his first victory since late November.